Harry Reid's Uphill Battle

Why his fight against Sharron Angle is far from a sure thing

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When the results of Nevada's GOP primary came in, Senate Majority leader Harry Reid no doubt breathed a sigh of relief. In a decisive win, Tea-Party favorite Sharron Angle beat out her establishment opponent Sue Lowden. Angle, it's safe to say, holds some rather controversial views. These include: shutting down much of the IRS and Department of Education, phasing out Social Security, and withdrawing the U.S. from the United Nations. Will those policies preclude her from taking down Reid? Perhaps not. A number of pundits are saying Reid's still got a tough fight ahead:

  • The GOP Is United, notes Paul Kane at The Washington Post: "'Dump Harry Reid': That was the chant from Angle's supporters as she took the stage inside the warm, cramped hall of the Orleans Hotel in Las Vegas Tuesday night. Despite the bitter primary between Angle and onetime frontrunner Sue Lowden, Nevada Republicans are deeply unified in their desire to oust Reid. At Lowden's final campaign stop Monday, while being interviewed by The Washington Post, ABC News and Politico, Lowden offered up an endorsement of Angle should she win, before we even asked the question. That's how badly Nevada Republicans want to beat Reid."
  • Just Look at the State of Nevada, writes Ron Bonjean at U.S. News and World Report: "Many pundits forget that in Nevada, there is a 14 percent unemployment rate--a tough environment for any incumbent. On top of that Reid, a four term senator, has a 41 percent approval rating. Winning is going to be tough to pull off... While the Democratic strategists are now less pessimistic, it is hard to see Reid winning based on [Angle] going nuclear in Nevada."
  • Voters Want Reid Out, says Ed Gillespie at Fox News: "He's got 100 percent name ID. Even if he had $170 million to spend attacking the Republican opponent, it's not going to matter. The voters in Nevada know him; they know his record. They are ready for a change. They want someone who's going to provide a balance and a check on this administration
  • She Won't Pull a Rand Paul, adds Kane: "National Republican strategists contend that Angle does not seek the limelight of national cable TV and will not get tripped up into debates on her conservative views on national TV venues, in the manner that the GOP nominee for the Kentucky Senate seat did soon after his May 18 victory. They contend that Angle - who has been on the ballot in one race or another seven straight cycles in Nevada - is more politically savvy than her fiery stump speeches let on. And national GOP operatives expect her to be more receptive to advice from Washington political experts now that she's the nominee."
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.